Novel approaches to the post-myocardial infarction/heart failure neural remodeling
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- D’Elia, E., Pascale, A., Marchesi, N. et al. Heart Fail Rev (2014) 19: 611. doi:10.1007/s10741-013-9415-6
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The review aims to discuss the role of nerve growth factor (NGF) as a potential novel biomarker in post-myocardial infarction (MI) and in heart failure (HF), with a specific focus on neural remodeling and sprouting processes occurring after tissue damage. Many experimental data show that MI induces nerve sprouting, leading to increased sympathetic outflow and higher risk of ventricular arrhythmias and sudden cardiac death. In this framework, cardiac and circulating NGF might be an indicator of the innervation process and neural remodeling: it dramatically increases after MI, while it declines along with advanced HF and ventricular dysfunction. The bimodal behavior of NGF in acute and chronic settings leads to the speculation that NGF modulation may be a pharmacological target for intervention in different stages of the ischemic heart disease. Specifically, a fascinating possibility is to support or to inhibit NGF receptors, in order to prevent negative cardiac remodeling after MI and consequent ventricular dysfunction.